Silicon Valley Industry Leaders Usher in New Age of Industrial Robots
Adept Technology, Inc. Posted 02/20/2012
Adept Technology Applies Open Source ROS Software to Industry
PLEASANTON, Calif. -- Adept Technology, Inc. (Nasdaq:ADEP), a leading provider of intelligent robots and autonomous mobile solutions, today announced a collaboration with Willow Garage to deliver solutions for manufacturing and industrial applications harnessing the strength of Willow Garage's ROS software framework with Adept's proven industrial robotic solutions. The two Silicon Valley-based companies along with Texas-based Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) are contributing to the ROS-Industrial project to combine the reliability of proven industrial robotics with the inherent flexibility of open source software.
The ROS-Industrial project leverages the legacy of Adept's leadership in industrial automation, the rapidly growing community of ROS developers, and SwRI's experience in transitioning technology from research to practical application. It is the objective of the project to merge the expansive development opportunities offered by open source software with the exacting requirements associated with production and manufacturing.
"This is a tremendous step forward for the robotics industry," said John Dulchinos, president and chief executive officer of Adept. "Bringing together the factory proven performance of Adept robots with the enabling open source software technology of ROS extends the state-of-the-art in industrial robotics, and makes the largest library of reusable robotics applications software available to a demanding industrial community to lower their total cost of ownership."
Willow Garage created and has supported ROS as part of its commitment to open source robotics software and the furtherance of the open source robotics community. The company has been a leader in founding and continuing to contribute heavily to the robot operating system, ROS. ROS software is free for anyone to use and change, and free for other companies to commercialize on. As has been proven in other fields, an open source approach enables robotics innovation and helps ensure that the adoption of robotic technologies is a transparent process.
"We are excited to be working with Adept to bring an open source software platform and the industry's largest applications library to industrial applications," said Steve Cousins, president and CEO of Willow Garage. "Willow Garage is committed to making robots the next breakthrough industry by expanding the range of applications while reducing the technical barriers to entry, including the largest concentration of robots currently found in manufacturing."
The initiative is focusing its efforts in ways that will make the manufacturing community more productive. Key to this objective is the efforts of Southwest Research Institute's experience in both the research and industrial communities. SwRI researchers and engineers see open source software and the ROS-Industrial project as enabling the transition of robotics research to meaningful application in Industry.
"We are pleased to participate in this work, as the benefits of introducing the open source ROS robotics community to industrial challenges will be transformative," said Clay Flannigan, manager of Robotics and Automation Engineering at SwRI. "The objective of this project is aligned with our charter to provide expertise in bringing fundamental research and technology to bear in industrial applications."
The ROS-Industrial software and more information can be found at http://ros.org/wiki/industrial.
About Adept Technology, Inc.
Adept is a global, leading provider of intelligent robots and autonomous mobile solutions and services that enable customers to achieve precision, speed, quality and productivity in their assembly, handling, packaging, testing, and logistical processes. With a comprehensive portfolio of high-performance motion controllers, application development software, vision-guidance technology and high-reliability robot mechanisms with autonomous capabilities, Adept provides specialized, cost-effective robotics systems and services to high-growth markets including Packaging, Medical, Disk Drive/Electronics, and Solar; as well as to traditional industrial markets including machine tool automation and automotive components.
Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) is an independent, nonprofit applied research and development organization. The staff of more than 3,000 specializes in the creation and transfer of technology in engineering and the physical sciences. During its more than 60 years of operation, Southwest Research Institute has grown from a single building to almost 100 major facilities with more than 2 million square feet of laboratories, workshops, test facilities, and offices. More information is available at http://www.swri.org.
About Willow Garage
Willow Garage is a company dedicated to designing robots, developing open source robotics software, and the advancement of the open source personal robotics community. Willow Garage has developed a hardware platform called the PR2 (Personal Robot 2), and an open source software platform called ROS (Robot Operating System). The ROS software that Willow Garage contributes is BSD-licensed, making it completely free for anyone to use and change and free for other companies to commercialize. A major goal is to enable robotics innovation and ensure that the adoption of robotic technologies is a transparent process with positive societal impact. Willow Garage actively engages research labs and companies as partners, collaborators, customers and advisors in the development of both their hardware platform and open source software, and also supports researchers who would not otherwise have the bandwidth or funding to open source their work. For more information, please visit: http://www.willowgarage.com and follow on Twitter @willowgarage.
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